Another picture of the new ebike pegs that we're having manufactured. Manufacturing is complete now and these are samples that are being reviewed for quality control. Provided there aren't any issues found with the samples or the shipment, these will be shipped to us towards the end of next week and we should have more inventory available before the end of the year!
Another picture below from the factory manufacturing more ebike pegs for us. You can see they are taking shape and look just about ready. The threading still needs to be drilled out and then they'll be cleaned up and ready to go. There was a slight delay (as is common, especially during COVID) but if they're finished up in the next week or two there's a strong chance they'll still be here before the end of November.
We sold out of all our ebike pegs in August this year, and are having more made as we speak. This is a picture of the raw pegs before they've been refined and cut to our requirements.
Manufacturing progress continues and they'll hopefully be finished by the end of this month and available again for sale early next month.
A customer of ours recently started making rubber shims for our bike seats that raise the frame up off of the pegs. This is extra useful for fatbikes with tires that are 4.5 inches and larger, providing additional clearance underneath the storage compartment. They're available for purchase directly from the Dragonfly website.
One of the most common bikes we've run into for these is the Sondors Original and Sondors X bikes, both with 4.9 inch tires. Dragonfly makes these rubber shims in two different sizes, 10mm and 19mm. All of the pictures included are on the Sondors Original ebike, using the 10mm size shims.
This is very exciting for us that Dragonfly is making these shims available. We first ran into the problem in the summer of 2016 in Reno NV while dropping off bike seat orders to folks heading to Burning Man. I came up with a work-around solution using commonly available parts from a hardware store (separate blog post here on our website) that worked, but was 100% DIY and not ideal. Now these shims manufactured specifically for use with Companion Bike Seats are readily available online!
Super cool ... thanks Simon!
We had several orders from people planning to take their bike seat out onto the playa this year. Unfortunately the bike seats were scheduled to arrive at the fulfillment center without enough time for shipping before people left. So I decided to take matters into my own hands. I already had plans to meet the new shipment when it arrived at the fulfillment center in Phoenix, since this is a new partner and it's always great to meet business partners face-to-face. In order to get bike seat orders out to folks heading to the playa, I filled up a minivan in Phoenix and road tripped north to meet them in Reno to give them their bike seats.
The new inventory arrived safely at the new distribution center on Friday of last week and I was able to review it all on Monday after arriving in Phoenix late Sunday night. The shipment looked great and all back-orders have been shipped out this week. I met with the team managing fulfillment now and they're good people and will take care of Companion Bike Seat well. It was pretty exciting to see the rows and rows of new bike seats (and backrests and ebike pegs) ready to ship out!
All in all it's been a pretty exhausting road trip after covering over 1500 miles of a 1700+ mile road trip, but well worth it at the end of the day. Most of our bike seat sales occur online today, so I get very few opportunities to meet with customers face to face, and this road trip has been awesome for that. Plus, bike seat orders are flowing again!
The first batch of sound cloths for Companion Bike Seat finally arrived from the manufacturer this weekend, and they look great! These sound cloths are now available for purchase on our website. We prototyped the sound cloth back in the Spring of this year and made them available for pre-order, but now they're finally available and can ship out immediately.
The sound cloth helps to dampen the sound that objects make bouncing around in the storage compartment of Companion Bike Seat while riding around. It's a piece of neoprene cloth that's designed to fit snugly down into the storage compartment, helping to eliminate any sound from objects clanking around inside the plastic stash-box of the bike seat.
Individual sound cloth back-orders will ship out immediately. Orders that also include a back-ordered bike seat will ship together next month once the next batch of bike seats arrive.
Great news! I received word from the factory this weekend that manufacturing was completed on Saturday! The new bike seats, backrests, and ebike pegs are going through final inspection at the factory now, and if everything looks good, they'll be in a shipping container on a boat heading towards California by the end of this month.
This latest shipment contains more bike seats, backrests, and the newly updated ebike pegs. This new design for the ebike pegs makes it easier than ever to tighten them down onto the rear axle of your ebike.
Tentative arrival of the shipment in LA Harbor is scheduled for August 15. From there it'll take a couple days to clear customs and get trucked to our new distribution partner's facility in Phoenix AZ. As soon as it arrives in Phoenix all back-orders will be shipped out immediately. I'll be traveling down from San Francisco to greet the shipment personally and make sure all back-orders are shipped asap. If everything goes according to plan, back-ordered bike seats should arrive by or before the end of August!
Stay tuned for more updates as I receive them from the factory and our shipping partner.
We ran out of bike seats back in April and more are being made as we speak. We're also having more backrests made, as well as mass-producing the ebike pegs for the first time. Prior to this, all of the ebike pegs have been regular pegs, customized by a local machine shop.
The first set of backrests were made by a different factory from the one that makes the bike seats. However, for this order, the bike seat factory decided they wanted to make the backrests as well. So they needed to put together prototype samples of the backrest as well as the ebike pegs. These samples just arrived today, and everything looks great.
Now that we've had a chance to review the samples in person and they meet the spec requirements, the factory can move forward with mass production of both the backrests and the ebike pegs.
I started working with a new local machine shop based in Oakland to make the modifications to our bicycle pegs so their compatible with ebikes. The ebike pegs for Companion Bike Seat involve two modifications to the pegs that are included with every bike seat:
The picture on the right is the peg in the CNC machine, getting the "ebike slot" cut out of the side. The picture on the left is the peg being tapped to the appropriate size diameter and thread pitch. Interestingly enough, when tapping the pegs, the pegs are spun and the drill bit is held stationary (I never knew it was done this way until now). We currently offer two different sizes of ebike pegs for Companion Bike Seat, based on the most common axle sizes for ebikes: 12mm diameter and 14mm diameter.
The video below shows the ebike peg being manufactured in the CNC machine.
It's always fun to go to a machine shop and imagine the endless possibilities of "things" that you can make. Arguably the possibilities are endless ... it's kind of like going to the airport with a load of cash in your pocket and a bunch of time off from work. This is something I've never done but definitely would like to at some point in my life, if ever given the opportunity.
It's also super interesting to see how things are made. This is something we take for granted, especially here in the US where not a whole lot of stuff is made anymore. It can be a real eye-opening experience (it certainly has been for me whenever I'm able to go visit a factory. It's great to see small local shops up and running and making things.
Remember, ALWAYS wear a HELMET!